Transformative STEAM education for sustainable development

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Title

Empowering Science and Mathematics for Global Competitiveness: Proceedings of the Science and Mathematics International Conference (SMIC 2018)


CRC Press


School of Education / Edith Cowan Institute for Education Research




Taylor, P. C, & Taylor, E. (2019). Transformative STEAM education for sustainable development. In Y. Rahmawati, & P. C. Taylor (Eds.), Empowering science and mathematics for global competitiveness: Proceedings of the science and mathematics international conference (SMIC 2018), November 2-4, 2018, Jakarta, Indonesia (pp. 118-124). London, UK: CRC Press. Available here


Humanity has created The Anthropocene, a new geological era characterized by the impact of our destructive footprint on the planet’s natural systems. However, the push to create curriculum synergies between Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (i.e., STEM) is largely ignoring this global crisis in favour of preparing students for employment in the fourth industrial (digital) revolution. This narrow focus is doing little to prevent students from turning a blind eye to the ethical dilemma of how global production, consumption and disposal of STEM products is implicated in destroying the natural environment. To save our ecosystems we need a transformative curriculum perspective that gives rise to a socially responsible STEM education. Integrating STEM with the Arts enables us to create interdisciplinary STEAM curriculum spaces for designing transformative pedagogies that develop students’ disciplinary knowledge/skills and awaken their creative self-consciousness, elevate their moral/ethical and spiritual awareness, and empower them to practice environmental justice.

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